Chapter 13 - A beast rises out of the sea with seven heads and ten crowned horns. One head had been killed but comes back to life. On his head is the name of blasphemy. The dragon gives to this beast a place, power and authority. The whole world worships the dragon and the beast. The beast is given a mouth, speaking great things, blaspheming God. He is given power to make war against the saints for 42 months, which is 1260 days.
This is a perfect representation of the situation in Rome, following the fall of the Western Empire in 476. The Goths ruled Rome and Italy until 535 AD. Between 530 and 550, the Eastern emperor, Justinian reconquered all North Africa and Italy. This was the beginning of the healing, or rebirth, of the sixth imperial head of Rome. It came to its completion under Charlemagne - the beginning of the Holy Roman Empire.
In 535, Justinian proclaimed the bishop of Rome as the primary bishop of the church, settling the controversy between the bishops of Constantinople and of Rome. This was at the time that he was beginning to reconquer Italy and Africa. This is the official beginning of the Papacy - the beginning of the dragon, the imperial power, now moved to Constantinople - of giving power to the new Roman beast that is arising from the old fallen Western Empire. Justinian represents the continuity of the dragon, which has moved to the east to Constantinople, and he, as the dragon, is beginning to build up or give power to the beast, the new Roman beast (which is not exactly new, because it is the rebirth of the old, but its new historically at this time.)
In 610, 75 years later, the famous decree of the Emperor Phocas made the Pope the supreme head of the church. The dragon had now given the beast full spiritual power in the Empire. The Papacy, as we know it, had now begun. His 42 months, or 1260 years, of persecuting power, which began at this time (610), ended in 1870, when the new kingdom of Italy took away all his lands around Rome and shut him up in the Vatican. There was a 75-year rise at the beginning and a 75-year decline at the end, as we shall see as we examine the history in detail.
Verse 8 - "And all that dwell on the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life."
Here is the great lesson for us. This is a Roman and a Catholic world, far more than the blind world realizes. The world is permeated with the corruption of Catholicism. Many of its customs and most of its festivals have Catholic roots. Those who are written in the book of life will eschew them like a deadly plague.
Verse 11 - "And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spoke as a dragon."
The previous beast (verse 1) had arisen out of the sea. When used in contrast, the sea represents the Mediterranean area and the earth the inland portions of north Europe. Soon after Phocas, around the year 600, the Arabian invasions began, and the Eastern Empire lost Africa and the Mid-East. (Africa had been reconquered by Justinian.) Thus weakened, the Eastern Empire could not hold Italy against the new invader - the Lombards, who were anti-trinitarian and anti-papal Arians.
But in the early 700's, a new champion of the Papacy arose in north Europe - the Franks. (Here is the beginning of the earth beast.) Between 750 and 800, the Franks conquered Italy and most of Europe. On Christmas day in Rome in the year 800, the Pope crowned the Frankish king Charlemagne as Roman Emperor. The deadly wound was now healed. The two-horned beast - Pope and Emperor - now began. This was thereafter the basic constitution of Europe for exactly 1000 years, until Napoleon by the vials of the 16th chapter destroyed the Holy Roman Empire in 1800 AD.
Verse 14 - The earth beast creates the image of the beast and commands all the earth to worship it upon pain of death. The Franks gave the Pope the papal state, a little kingdom of his own - all central Italy, and the Papacy became the image of an empire with all imperial pomp and pretension, claiming absolute spiritual dominion of the whole world. This chapter ends with the mark and the number of that beast for identification - 666.
Bro Growcott - Review of the Apocalypse
1 And I stood [representatively - neutral from the storms of sea and earth conflicts] upon the Sand [ecclesial multitude] of the Sea [Meditteranean Latin kingdom and principalities], and <I> saw [a period of 405 years] <ascending out of the Sea a Beast> [ascending through Justinian AD 535 (healing of the sixth imperial head of Rome - which he retook from the Goths)], having Seven Heads and Ten Horns [10 tribes distributing kingly power over the western Roman empire -founders of the Horn-Kingdoms of the Beast], and upon his horns Ten <Diadems>, and upon his heads < a NAME OF BLASPHEMY>.
I stood upon the Sand of the Sea
Daniel reclined upon his bed and dreamed but John stood upon the Sand of the Sea, and saw things bearing resemblances to what he deemed sufficiently striking to establish their identity. Daniel says that It was stormy in his vision; or, as he expresses it, "the four winds of the heaven strove." But in this thirteenth chapter John says nothing about a strife of winds; but simply "I stood."
...His standing then upon the margin of the roaring waters was significant of the storminess of the times, when what he "saw" should ascend to dominion "in the whole earth," en hole te ge. He stood, and the roar he heard was
"the multitude of many peoples, making a noise like the noise of the seas; the rushing of nations, making a rushing like the rushing of mighty waters."
... This implication places John and Daniel side by side as spectators of the storm. Daniel saw the four winds lashing the sea into fury; east, west, north, and south winds, all blowing upon the same sea.
Each of Daniel's four beasts, or dominions, was brought up out of the sea by the four winds of his vision. The Fourth Beast was brought up thereby; and so was his Sea-Beast development; and John apocalyptically beheld the same four winds as he "stood upon the Sand of the Sea, and saw."
...The winds producing the roar of the sea, were "the four winds of the earth," which, in their blowing, gave voice to the first four "wind" trumpets. [1.Alaric, 2.Genseric, 3.Attila, 4.The Goths]
...The judgments of these four winds culminate in the development of the Seventh Head, which 'continues a short space'; and of the Ten Diademed Horns of the Beast that rises out of the sea; in the 'wounding as it were to death' of its Sixth Head; and in the consequent cession by the Dragon of his power, throne and dominion over the affected Third Part, which before the blowing of those winds, was a constituent of his empire". ... It was a period of 405 years. This was the time of his symbolic standing upon the Sand of the Sea, beholding the development of the Fourth Beast, in its Seventh Head, Ten Horns, and Little Horn, with Man's Eyes and a Lion's Mouth.
...The subject is the obscuration of the luminaries of a political universe of a dominion. These are things of centuries. Their day and their night, is their day-time and their night-time of ages. Hence a time is a minor cycle contained in the aeon, or aeon, of their duration.
The aeon of the Sea-Monster's Mouth is three cycles and a half, or three times and a half, or three days and a half, or 1260 years and as a cycle, or circle, is geometrically divisible into three hundred and sixty equal parts -A time or day, is a year of years, or 360 lunar years.
Rome's lights which ruled her day and night times were not eclipsed for a whole day and a whole night: but only for a third of each of these times. Had she lost her rule for a whole day and a whole night, her ruling would have been suppressed for seven hundred and twenty years, or a dual of times: but as it was, her day-time and her night-time only ceased shining two hundred and forty years, which are the sum of the thirds predicted; for the third of a day-time of three hundred and sixty years is one hundred and twenty years: and the third of a night-time of three hundred and sixty' years; is also one hundred and twenty years; and these two periods of one hundred and twenty years each added together give two hundred and forty years.
Now if these 240 years be added to A.D. 559, the epoch of Rome's degradation, it gives the sum A.D. 799; when, if my exposition of the symbolic time of the Fourth Trumpet be correct, history ought to testify Rome's restoration to the IMPERIAL DIGNITY from which she had been degraded by the will of the Catholic Dragon.
Now John informs us, that he stood and saw the ascending of the Sea-Beast and the ascending of the Earth-Beast [v11]: this then was the period of his standing - he stood while they were ascending.
The latter Beast was developed imperially, with Rome for its tempo-spiritual throne, A.D. 799. Hence John's standing upon the Sand of the Sea reaches, in its significance, to this date, or to the end of the 240 years. Add then these years to the terminal epoch of the fourth trumpet, and we have a period of 405 years - a stormy period, which changed the face of the world; and laid the foundation of a polity, which, after a lapse of more than a thousand years, is manifest in the existing constitution of MODERN EUROPE.
The Sand of the Sea
John stands not upon the earth to view the ascent of the Beast of the Earth; nor upon the sea to behold the ascent of the Beast of the Sea; but upon the sand of the sea to see the ascent of them both.
...the sand of the sea ... must be taken to represent the bound, shore, or limit, of the symbolical sea. But the sand of the sea is also the similitude for a multitude of people... Hosea ... 1:10...also in the sense of multitude we find used apocalyptically in chapter 20:8,
...Now John was "a man wondered at," a man of sign, or as we say in our vernacular, a representative man...Hence John upon the sand represented that portion of
"the great multitude which no man can number" (Apoc. 7:9)
existing contemporaneously with the ascending of the beasts out of the sea... who refused to worship the Image of the Beast...The position they occupied in the four hundred years of the ascending of the monsters of the sea and the earth, was that of neutral observers of events; whose antipathies were against their old enemy the Catholic Dragon.
The judgments of the four wind-trumpets were not sent against the servants of the Deity, ... Hence John's multitude in the Wings, or extremities, of the Great Eagle, had the sympathy of "the barbarians" who rushed in upon the Dragon's domain...while the Dragon and the barbarians were in tempestuous and stormy conflict, their multitude in the Roman Africa and the Alpine regions would hear the roar of the tempest-tossed sea, standing as it were upon the shore.
In the Hebrew tongue any collection of waters is termed seas as in Gen. 1:10, "The gathering together of the waters, he called seas."
..."SEA, clear and serene, denotes an orderly collection of people, in a quiet and peaceable state." "Sea, troubled and tumultuous, signifies a collection of men in motion and war. Either way, the waters signifying people, and the sea being a collection of waters, the sea becomes the symbol of people, gathered into one body politic, kingdom, or jurisdiction, or united in one design." - Daubuz
... The events in their accomplishment show that the signification of the Sea is both symbolical and literal. Daniel's vision of the ascendency of the Horns plalnly shows, that their manifestation was in connexion with the literal LATIN SEA, the Mediterranean.
His words are, "the four winds of the heaven strove upon THE GREAT SEA." This was the name given to the Mediterranean, or Sea in the midst of the earth, by the Hebrews. He describes the four beasts that came up out of it, as four dominions: and in the interpretation, the Sea is styled the Earth; and the beasts arising out of it, are termed kings (Ver. 17,3).
Compare the symbol in verse 3, with the signification in verse 17: thus, "Four beasts came up from the sea (upon which the winds strove); diverse one from another;" and now read the explanation,
"These great beasts which are four are four kings which shall arise out of the earth".
Now the fourth king was the "dreadful and terrible" one. He came up with his body, head, and horns Out of the Great Sea, in the sense of arising out of the countries by which the sea is almost enclosed as a lake.
Here is a blending of the symbolical and the literal; and so, that in the interpretation, the symbolical is anchored to the literal; by which I mean, that we must not go away to the Baltic, and Atlantic, and German Oceans, to find the fourth beast and his heads and horns; but must confine our investigations to those countries which in the days of the prophecy had outlets upon the Great Sea.
...John also saw... the kingdoms and empires of Modern Europe so far as their origin was Mediterranean, ascending from this sea. He stood literally upon its Patmian Shore, in a numerous cluster of its islands, which were as but the sands of its coast; and from this, as the representative of a multitude occupying the wings of this sea-region, he saw kingdoms arise from the symbolic sea inhabiting the literal maritime earth enclosing the Latin Sea.
"The Beast that ascendeth out of the Bottomless Pit" - Ch. 11:7
The sea, the sand of the sea, and the abyss styled in the Common Version, "the bottomless pit," are related to the Beast of ch. 11:7 and chapter 13:1. In the former text, it is said to ascend out of the abyss, and in the latter, out of the sea.
But, though the terms expressive of the place of origin are two different ones, there are not two different beasts, but one and the same beast only. But then, why are these two
different terms employed with reference to the same beast? There must be a reason for it.
....symbolically and apocalyptically, sea and deep do not represent all that is intended to be conveyed by the word.
Abussos is derived from a priv. and bussos, the depth, and therefore signifies, that which is not, or has not been, fathomed; hence, in general, boundless, exhaustless. The apocalyptic terms above recited are terms of extension. The sea and the earth of this chapter are coextensive with the Mediterranean and its countries to the Rhine, and Danube; these were a deep that had been politically bounded, or fathomed: but, what of that vast unmeasured, or boundless, region beyond?
That region styled in John's time, Germania, European and Asiatic Sarmatia, and Scythia, beyond the Rhine, the Danube, the Carpathian Mountains, the Dniester, the Black Sea, the Caucasian Mountains, and the Caspian Sea?
This was a wild, unsubdued wilderness stretching along the northern frontier of the Great Roman Eagle, inhabited by swarms of fierce barbarians, whom the Romans were unable to fathom, or to bring within the appreciable depths of the earth and sea. They were an unorganized confused multitude an abyss of which no conqueror or legislator had been able to reach the bottom.
...The abyss, which was "the Northern Hive" from which swarmed forth the destroying agents of the first four trumpets, sounded against the Roman Earth and Sea, is now the area of Germany from the Rhine and Danube to the Baltic, Bohemia, Poland, the Great Russian empire, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark.
In the times of the ascending of the Sea Beast, these were the ultramarine, abyssal fountains of the Great Sea; which, when broken up, roared forth their floods and tempests, and developed upon the Latin Habitable the Ten-Horn Kingdoms of Modern Europe.
Hence the reason why the same beast is attributed to different sources. He came latent, or hidden, as it were, being as yet undeveloped, from the outlying abyssal region, when the Barbarians of the North rushed in upon the sea, and the rivers, and the fountains of waters, belonging to the Catholic Dragon: and he came up above the waters of the sea when the invading hosts of the abyss effected settlements upon the Dragon-territory, and were developed into the Ten Diademed Horns of the Beast.
'As a roaring lion and a ranging bear; so is a wicked ruler over the poor people"'
Upon the principle of this proverb the beasts of the apocalypse are symbolical of wicked rulers.
They are "dreadful and terrible" to the choicest of mankind; for it is written, "the beast that ascendeth out of the abyss," said the Spirit, "will make war upon my two witnesses, and will overcome them, and kill them" (Apoc. 11:7); and the same thing is affirmed of the beast of the sea in ch. 13:7, as, "and it was given unto him to make war with the Saints, and to overcome them;" but in relation to these, which he overcomes, or treads them, as the Holy City, under foot, it does not say that he kills them as he killed the witnesses.
Truly, as a roaring lion and a ranging bear," have these apocalyptic beasts been to the poor saints and witnesses over whom they have tyrannized for ages.
The Seven Heads of the Beast
"The Head of a beast answers to the supreme power, and that whether the supreme power be in one single person or in many". Daubuz
...The Beast of the Sea has seven heads as well as the Pago-Catholic Dragon. They are the same heads, and identify the Dragon and the Beast as apocalyptically diverse constitutional developments of the same power.
The only difference of the two series of heads symbolically viewed is, that the Dragon series is diademed, while the Beast series is not. In the latter symbol the Horns, not the Heads, are diademed; but in the case of the Dragon it was the heads and not the horns.
The Ten Diademed Horns of the Beast
"Horns upon a wild beast are not only expressive of powers, but also of such powers as are tyrannical, ravenous and at enmity with God and his saints, as in Dan. 8" Daubuz.
The Horns of the Sea Monster represent Ten Kingdoms established by the Barbarians of the Abyss upon all that Mediterranean territory conquered by them from the Roman Dragon. This appears from the testimony that "the Dragon yielded to him his power, and his throne, and an extensive jurisdiction" - ver. 2. In relinquishing it to the beast, he yielded them to his appendages, the horns and mouth as well. In ch. 17:12, John was informed that the ten horns were symbolical of kingdoms:
"the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdoms as yet;"
that is, they had received no kingdom at the time the interpreter was talking with John. Daniel gives the same record in ch. 7:23. He had said that he wished to know the truth represented by the ten horns upon the fourth beast's head; upon which it was stated to him that
"the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise;"
and those in ver. 9, are styled "the thrones" which are to be "cast down" when the Ancient bf Days comes to sit in judgment upon them. And this judgment John indicates in the words: "These (Ten Horns) shall make war upon the Lamb, and the Lamb shall over-come them; for He is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him (the Saints of the Holy City) are called chosen and faithful" (Apoc. 17:14).
...The following is the list that seems to me authorized by history: 1. Huns; 2. Vandals; 3. Visigoths; 4. Burgundians; 5. Gepidoe; 6. Lombards; 7. Franks; 8. Suevi; 9. Alans; 10. Bavarians. These were the founders of the Horn-Kingdoms of the Beast. This divided form of Mediterranean Europe has continued for ages, even to the present time; though the number of its divisions has not always, nor is it now, ten. The prophecy does not require that the number of the kingdoms should be invariable.
They were ten in the period of their foundation, and from this fact have acquired the symbolic designation of the Ten Horns. So that though their number might be reduced one-half, the power that might be established over the territory they originally occupied would, to that extent, be represented as the Ten Horns.
...On the conquest of Italy and termination of imperial authority by the deposition of Augustulus by Odoacer, the Herulian Goth, A D. 475, the barbarians of the apocalyptic abyss held possession of the whole western division of the Latin Sea, with the exception of a part of Gaul, and were distributed under ten kingly governments.Eureka 13.8.
Beast of the Sea
The throne of the Dragon was Rome, so long as the Roman Senate existed there, and the Seven Heads of the Dragon were incomplete.
But when this throne was "yielded," [to the Goths] and the Roman Senate expired, the throne of the Dragon was confined to Constantinople exclusively
....The Beast of the Sea divided the Roman habitable with the Catholic Dragon of the East. They are the two limbs of Nebuchadnezzar's Image. The dominion of this Sea Monster was, as John predicted, "extensive".
It ruled all the habitable to the Westward of said line, including France, Spain, the Roman Africa, Italy, and the region between the Alps and the Rhine, Danube, and Save, anciently known under the names of Rhtia, Noricum, and Pannonia, but in our times as Switzerland, half Suabia, Bavaria, and Austria and the western part of Hungary.
In this outline I have not included England, Scotland, and Ireland, for reasons which need not be mentioned in this place.
11 And I <saw> another Beast [holy Roman empire AD 800] <ascending> out of the Earth [central Europe]; and he had Two Horns like <to> a lamb, and he spake as a Dragon.
The Beast of the Earth
A map of Central Europe will exhibit the Beast of the Earth with sufficient accuracy. Its acquisition of ROME conferred upon it the quality of holiness in the estimation of its worshippers; so that by them it came to be styled "THE HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE." It comprehended Italy, Austria, Bavaria, Hungary, and Germany to the North and Baltic seas. Its secular throne, in the beginning, was at AIX-LACHAPELLE, but afterwards at VIENNA; and its spiritual seat in ROME.
The Beast of the Earth is an extension of Daniel's Fourth Beast northwards through the forests of Germany, in which the Romans of the old world could never effect a permanent settlement.
The Beast of the Sea emerged after the collapse of the western Empire in 475 A.D. It was superseded by the Holy Roman Empire, or Beast of the earth in 800.
18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is 666.
It is a wonderful vision, inasmuch as it reveals warnings and exhortations to the believers down the ages, being appropriate for every age and generation. Though there might be persecution and political death for a time (cp. ch. 13:7), there would remain a faithful remnant that will remain free from the mark of the Beast. It is "wisdom" to recognise the number of the beast (v. 18), and that wisdom is given to those who understand the true nature of the Apocalypse. - GEM, Logos.